Angry Birds Party!

30 April 2013 | 10 Comments

We tossed around several theme ideas this year for Finnegan’s 6th birthday party.  His love for Angry Birds won out over a Phineas and Ferb party, which was a very close second.  This was the first year that we didn’t combine his family and friend party, so we decided to have it at home.  We are in the midst of a chaotic few weeks, so I also wanted to keep the party simple and fun.  My sister Lyndsey and I shopped for almost everything the day before and spent probably 5 hours putting everything together, setting it all up and decorating.  Since he was turning six, we asked him to choose six friends to invite, it was a great size.

Life Sized Angry Birds

We had planned to be outside with the life sized Angry Birds tower, but it was raining the day of the party, so we set it up in the living room instead.  I’ve promised Finn that we’ll set it up outside this week after school so he can go nuts.  To make the tower, we just bought a ton of plain cardboard boxes in different sizes from B&B Box and Sharpie’d them with the lines like the game.  Make sure to get a few square boxes for the TNT and a few long boxes for the wood.  I printed the TNT signs on white paper using Feast of Flesh that I downloaded free from, it is very close to the Angry Birds font.  If I were doing it all over, I might find some white boxes and make the ice and the concrete blocks as well.  It was seriously easy and the kids LOVED it. 

For the pigs, I just printed an Angry Bird pig face in different sizes on full sheet label paper and we cut the eyes and snout out and stuck them on.  We bought the big green balls at Target, the smaller size we found at the dollar store and each of his friends got to take one home as part of their favor.  One insanely helpful hint from my friend Monica, use an empty paper towel roll cut into 1 inch slices to make a little stand for the pigs to sit on so they stay where you want them.

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We also had planned on an egg hunt, we had two dozen confetti filled eggs.  We were going to hide them in the back yard and let them find them and smash them outside, but since it was raining that was a no-go.  Dave told me to just let them go for it in the living room and we could vacuum it up, so we did.  They thought this was the best thing ever.

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The Angry Birds Table

For the centerpiece, we used a round basket as a bird nest, added blue shredded paper for some color and filled it with bomb bird, red bird, and king pig stuffed animals that Finn already had, plus a few golden eggs from our stash of Easter eggs. 

We used a lime green tablecloth, blue and white scrapbook paper as a placemat and topped it with red, black and yellow square plates.  The only licensed tableware we bought were the plastic Space cups.  Finn wanted the Angry Birds Cheese Nips for a snack so we put those in black and white polka dot cups.  The silverware, we wrapped with a green napkin, wood plank scrapbook paper and a sticker that I printed on round labels with all the different Angry Birds.  They all peeled their stickers off and wore them, so I think they were a hit.

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The Angry Birds Decorations

I wanted to do a bunting type ceiling, but that was a hanging disaster, so we went with filling the ceiling above the table with tons of Angry Birds made out of balloons.  The Party Animal has a great FREE Angry Birds download for you to print.  We used a cardstock for printing and double sided tape to stick the faces on.  Did I mention how EASY this party was?  She had red, black, white, yellow, and blue birds, plus the king pig.

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We also added a stack of boxes in the corner with a corporal pig on top.  We just bought a play helmet at the dollar store for his head.

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I also made a couple of silly signs.

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The Angry Birds Favors

We had so much fun putting these together!  The bags were small canvas totes.  We filled with an Angry Birds toothbrush, a small bag of Angry Birds graham crackers, a pack of Angry Birds trading cards, stickers, and a ring pop.  Plus they also took home one of the small green balls.  I had meant for them to take their plastic cups home as well, but I completely forgot as they were all leaving so we’ll send those home with the thank you notes.

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There are TONS and tons of Angry Bird Party ideas out there, I created a Pinterest board with all of the great ideas and inspiration that I came across while planning, go check all of them out!

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29 April 2013 | 3 Comments

This weekend.  Oh, this weekend.

Friday night, I got to hug on my sister Rachael.  It’s been six months since she moved to Palestine and we’re all unbelievably excited to have her home for a month.  She has all kinds of fun stories of cultural differences and cool things she’s doing.  I’m going to see if she might want to do a guest post.

First up, margaritas.  Second, ice cream.

Dinner 2 Dinner 

Tomorrow I’ll have all the details on Finnegan’s Angry Birds Party for you.

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How was your weekend?  Do anything fun?

Friday Finest.

26 April 2013 | 1 Comments

Friday Finest

<<< I probably would have had a heart attack if Dave proposed like this. Can you even imagine?

>>> I got to meet Kate from Chicalookate at a local show and Lyndsey and I laughed hysterically through all of her prints.  I wanted pretty much everything.

<<< Hilarious notes from kids.

>>> Which reminds me, Dave found this note from me while we were cleaning out a closet.  Good times.

Happy Friday, Peeps!  See you Monday!

The Bad. The Ugly. And the Funny.

25 April 2013 | 4 Comments

We all piled into the car to take Finn for his birthday dinner and it was looking a little scary outside.  After a gorgeous day, the rain and cold was on its way.  We hurried along, but no sooner did we park when I hear the first wave of rain hitting the car.  Luckily, Dave was the only one out of the car since I was still reaching for my purse and Tate’s sweater.  I looked in the back seat to see if my umbrella was there.

Now, I can’t remember if he told me that he got pooped on by a giant bird with obvious stomach issues or if I looked up and saw that the rain that hit the car was very obviously not rain.  Either way, both observations were in very short proximity to each other.  Do birds even have stomachs or is it food in, let’s find an unsuspecting person or a clean car to poo on, double bonus points for both?

And then I laughed.  I laughed hard.

I mean yes, I pulled out baby wipes and tried to help him out. 

I was also calculating in my head how much bird poop one would have to get hit with and still make it to your six year old’s birthday dinner.

Turns out, for Dave, any amount of poop negates that dinner faster than you can say, “I think it’s supposed to be good luck…”

School Day Mornings.

24 April 2013 | 6 Comments


Mornings are hard at our house.

I am chaotic.  Finnegan is stalling.  Tate is into everything

Is lunch made?  Has Monty been fed? Wait… where is your library book?  You have gym today, you need sneaks!  Tate!  Get out of the dog water right now!

I try, often failing miserably, to keep the rushed craziness to a minimum.  I try to bite my tongue instead of yelling.  Do you know why?

Because every single morning, I drop Finn off to school I give him a hug and tell him to have a good day. 

It started when school did, but since Newtown, I have been vigilant about it.  Some days the hug is begrudgingly rushed.  Some days it feels forced.  Some of those particularly bad mornings, I don’t want to do it at all.  But, I do.

Life happens like that, there are good and bad days for everyone. 

Even moms. 

Especially moms. 

We don’t always like our children and our children don’t always like us.  And it’s really ok.

The days though that we’ve kept the crazy to a minimum and he is happy to run into school?  Those are the days that I feel like I’m winning this motherhood thing.  The hug is boisterous and held for just a few seconds longer.  Just a smidge tighter.  I yell out the car window, “LEARN something cool!” and he has a huge smile on his face and yells OK over his shoulder. 

Those days I feel like I’m doing something right.

I know it isn’t every day.  I’m not perfect by any means, but it’s just enough to make me feel like maybe we’re on the right track. Lord knows that there are enough reminders around to make me feel like we’re the worst parents ever.

What makes you feel like you’re winning this whole parenthood thing?


23 April 2013 | 5 Comments

I asked him to stay five, but he tells me that this can’t be helped. 

He is six.


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Six years ago, when we drove to the hospital, I still had my doubts.  A boy? WHAT will I do with a boy?

Now, I can’t imagine what we would do without him.

He is maddening and fiery and his own person to be sure.  He’s stubborn and contrary just because.  He is also kind hearted and intelligent and sweet.  And he can make us all laugh like you wouldn’t believe. 

Happy Birthday Finna James, you are immeasurably loved. 

A Little Birdie Told Me.

22 April 2013 | 4 Comments

Guess what we’re doing?  Nope, not moving.

Birthday prep for Finnegan’s party this weekend.

How Do You Argue?

18 April 2013 | 9 Comments


One of the most interesting things about marriage, well any relationship really, is how people handle disagreement.  I think it’s one of the most important things in a marriage to be able to resolve conflict.  It is also one of the toughest.

I am a yeller. A blow up fast, and over it just as fast kind of girl.  For someone that is a calm discusser or an avoider, I’m sure it would not be fun to have an argument with me.

Are you a bottle it up and hold it in kind of girl?  Do you stew about it?  Or think about it before you speak?  Do you hate confrontation and avoid it at all costs?  Are you a grudge holder?  Do you pretend something has magically gone away, swept right under the rug?  Are you passive aggressive?  Do you take a deep breath?  Do you run away?  Or walk away until you are calm?

That Dave of mine is a stew about it kind of guy.  He’s pretty good about not stewing for long. In our house, it is easier for us to deal with things quickly and get over them.  Not only for me because I hate to hold it in, but for Dave because sometimes simple misunderstandings have time to escalate. 

We’re not a couple that likes to sit calmly and exchange lists of what is bugging us.  Our neighbors probably wish that we were sometimes.  I always find it so interesting when people can walk away and come back to an argument a few hours later.  HOW do you manage to do that?

Do you apologize?

We apologize to each other.  If you are someone that knows me well, you will understand just how incredibly difficult this is for me.  I don’t like to be wrong.  Ever.  But sometimes I am, and when I am, I admit it.  Apologizing is something I had to learn.  It is still a struggle, don’t get me wrong.  It’s something that Dave does and makes me feel incredibly loved.  It is amazing to me how I can be softened by a simple, “I am so sorry I took my bad day out on you.  I love you.” 

Tell me about your relationship.  What kind of arguer are you?  Are your arguing styles compatible?

White Cake, chocolate Frosting.

17 April 2013 | 13 Comments


{Photo: Kate Mackley}


Is this what being a grown up is supposed to feel like? 

Because it feels pretty marvelous.

I can’t wait to see what is next.


16 April 2013 | 0 Comments


Give your peeps a hug today.  And if you can, take a little break, the details will be there when you get back.

That is what we’re doing. 

April Showers + May Flowers Baby Shower.

15 April 2013 | 7 Comments

You only need a few things for a baby shower.  Great friends and an impending arrival.  All of the rest is just details.  That is, until you attend a baby shower where you not only have great friends and an impending arrival, but where every detail is thought out.  At every turn you say things like oh, that is awesome or look at that, you’ve thought of everything.  The real trick is to have an intimate shower where all of these details are noticed and appreciated, but not done in a fussy way.  Relaxed and thoughtful and beautiful.

These are the showers that Lianne plans. 

My friend Merrily is one of those people that you can’t help loving.  She has this uncanny knack for making everything more fun.  She was married last year and one of my favorite things about her wedding festivities was attending her bridal shower.  It is arguably the best shower I have ever been to, planned by her sister Lianne.  Remember those unreal sea salt chocolate chip cookies?  Yep, Lianne took her mom’s secret recipe and made favors for everyone.  It really is the bane of my blogging existence that I didn’t take a camera and share it with all of you.  I wasn’t going to make that mistake twice.  When I got the invitation for Mer’s baby shower, I sent an email to Lianne and begged her to let me share the details.

Lianne chose the April Showers theme because she had the shower in April and Merrily loves the color grey.  She decided to add the May flowers not only because Mer is due in May, but also because she said she was having a hard time coming up with food ideas around a wet rainy theme.  {Love that.}  Once she added the May flowers into the mix, everything started falling into place.  She made grey and white tissue poms with raindrops hanging from them.  Every surface was covered with tiny micro flowers, it was so pretty.

Merrily and Lianne Baby Shower Tulips

Baby Shower Menu

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Wild Flower Salad

Baby Shower Menu

Flower Pot Cake Stand

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154 Baby Shower Washcloth Flowers

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Mer   Mom

One last thing… this baby is a surprise!  Leave your guess, BOY or GIRL, in the comments!


Friday Finest.

12 April 2013 | 2 Comments

Friday Finest

<<< Necole painted this Ikea armoire and I want her to send it to my house.  It is unreal how cool it is.

>>> This is Dave’s favorite new internet addiction.  Reasons My Son Is Crying.  It totally reminds me of this picture of Tate.

<<< Three years ago, we were spreading a whole lot of kindness.  I want to do it again.  That might need to be on next year’s birthday agenda.  Or maybe we can do it just because?

>>> Sarah isn’t just my blog designer, she’s a bad ass aerialist that got to perform with Salt n Pepa!

<<< Megan’s unexpected computer hiatus wasn’t so bad after all.  People wonder why I think margaritas are the devil.

>>> You should follow my friend Alecia on Instagram.  She has spent the last six months living in the south of France {my dream} with her daughter Zoe and her photos are spectacular.



<<< Happy happy weekend.  I hope you have something fun planned. >>>

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